Thanksgiving; It Ain’t About the Turkey!

Well, it’s that time of year again when all thoughts go to food and family and pretty much in that order.  “Turkey Day” as it’s called my many, and Thanksgiving as it is known by all.   But first, a bit of background. Most feel that the Thanksgiving feast began around 1621 in Plymouth, Mass. but it actually started about 50 years prior.

THE FIRST DOCUMENTED THANKSGIVING IN NORTH AMERICA WAS SEPTEMBER 8, 1565…..56 years before the Pilgrims celebrated in Massachusetts in 1621.
Pedro Menendez de Aviles and 800 Spanish settlers celebrated a feast and a mass with the local Seloy Tribe of the Timucuans – thus, introducing the Native Floridians to their first experience of Christianity.
The menu was cocido, a stew of pork and garbonzo beans, hard sea biscuits and red wine. This celebration took place in what would be later called San Augustin, La Florida de Norteamerica.

And, the feast was not to celebrate a bountiful harvest but to rather, the slaughter of the French “Lutherans” by the Spanish.  And there you have it, and I’ve probably ruined your Thanksgiving. But ya know, as the title says, “It Ain’t About the Turkey”.

Sure, we celebrate with turkey, cocido, and/or many other foods but Thanksgiving is really about giving thanks to God for the many blessings he has given us.  And the blessings are too numerous to mention here but as an example, here’s a short list for those who are reading this post. You are alive, you are healthy enough to use a computer, you can read, you can afford a computer, you have enough education that you know how to use the computer, and on and on. A wonderful and gracious God is responsible for all of that.

In God’s word we are told to “Be careful for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God”.

The Bible has much to say about thanksgiving. Note the number of times the word thanks or related words appear in the Bible: thanks—75, thanksgiving—28, thank—27, thankful—3, thanked—3, thanksgivings—2, thankfulness—1 (a total of 139). Thanksgiving is one of the most needed things in the church today. We have many prayer requests, but few who praise and thank the Lord.

How often do you thank the Lord? Being thankful changes our whole outlook. It changes our attitudes. A thankful person is a happy person. Nothing hurts God’s work and His church more than a complaining Christian!

This Thanksgiving, as we reunite with family and friends, let’s remember WHO we are thankful to and why we are so thankful.


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